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Thread: Planning for a cycle tour

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    Default Planning for a cycle tour

    Hi
    I am thinking of doing a cycle tour from Chennai to Kanyakumari early next year. I hope to do this trip over 12-15 days, covering about 50-100 km a day, a couple of rest days in between. The idea is to see my state, a few places of interest and as an opportunity to understand myself.

    I am thinking of going via ECR all the way down. During the next 6 months, i plan to train and get fit to undertake this journey. I currently own a 4 year old mtb without gear and cycle twice a week covering about 20-25 km each ride.

    My questions to the experts:
    1. What bicycle should i buy for this trip? Hybrid or mtb? While a prefer a fixie due to low maintenance am open for suggestions. My budget is 15-20k.
    2. What should i know about my cycle- maintenance, puncture fixes, etc? As of now, I don’t know anything.
    3. What tools should I carry to prevent being stranded in no man’s land
    4. What would be a good distance to cover on a day to day basis.
    5. I plan to stay in hotels and wst out and hence no plans to carry tents / cooking equipment.
    6. What accessories should i get? I currently have a btwin helmet. Should i get a padded shorts?

    Any other suggestions.

    Thanks for your responses
    Raghu

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    Moderator The Monk's Avatar
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    Default Re: Planning for a cycle tour

    Query Approved

    1. If you are planning to buy a new bicycle for this trip then go for a hybrid.
    2. All those things you mentioned. Practice on your bike at home. YouTube for the win!
    3. You just need very basic tools. A puncture repair kit, an allen key set and a couple of correct sized spanners
    4. About 150 km, considering you will be riding on pancake flat roads!
    5. Ok
    6. Padded shorts will help and lights.

    Keep asking questions till you get all the answers
    Biking is not about what you have between your legs, its all about how well you use it!!!!!!!

    Give your details here if you want to help your fellow xBhpian stranded in your city

    Touring Blog: Cycling in Mongolia!

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    Default Re: Planning for a cycle tour

    Thanks Monk. I hope to keep this thread alive as i get into my training.
    1. Yes, since i bought this second hand mtb last year, i am planning to buy a new cycle this year. Should i go for a hybrid with gear orca fixie? Also the cycle is not just for this trip but to keep cycling on a regular basis. So does hybrid fit the bill?

    5. Is 150 km a day doable? I currently take about 75-90 minutes to cycle 25-28 km during weekends. My average speed is around 17-18 kmph. Also, given the fact that am in mid 40s plus not fit, is this distance doable on a daily basis for a days together.

    6. Some of the cycling blogs mention about panniers for carrying luggage whereas i was thinking of a back pack tied to my carrier. Any thoughts?

    Thanks
    Raghu

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    Default Re: Planning for a cycle tour

    All the best for your trip.

    For the accessory part, please add an air pump & two bottle cages in the cycle. cycling gloves & arm sleeves will be a valuable addition when cycling during dust and sun.

    I think a hybrid with gears will be easier to ride as you are planning for long distances

    panniers will definitely help for carrying luggage.

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    Default Re: Planning for a cycle tour

    Quote Originally Posted by sraghu73 View Post
    Thanks Monk. I hope to keep this thread alive as i get into my training.
    1. Yes, since i bought this second hand mtb last year, i am planning to buy a new cycle this year. Should i go for a hybrid with gear orca fixie? Also the cycle is not just for this trip but to keep cycling on a regular basis. So does hybrid fit the bill?

    5. Is 150 km a day doable? I currently take about 75-90 minutes to cycle 25-28 km during weekends. My average speed is around 17-18 kmph. Also, given the fact that am in mid 40s plus not fit, is this distance doable on a daily basis for a days together.

    6. Some of the cycling blogs mention about panniers for carrying luggage whereas i was thinking of a back pack tied to my carrier. Any thoughts?

    Thanks
    Raghu

    1. Fixie. Nope. Also, fixie isn't a single speed, it is a bike with a fixed gear hub. i.e. if you stop pedalling, your bike stops. A hybrid with gears would be ideal. Yes, the hybrid would be great in general for keeping fit.

    5. Assuming you start early in the morning, sunrise. You can ride for a few hours. You will also get faster and be fitter when you start riding. Age is not a problem. Fitness will improve, just keep at it. You cannot do any distance for days together. You can ride for a couple of days, take the third day off. With a bit of experience you will figure out what works best for you. How many rest days, do you require.

    6. Panniers are nice. Convenient. Backpack tied to carrier is also a good idea, works cheaper. Just make sure you get a sufficiently sturdy rack for your bike which can take the weight of the luggage, be it pannier or backpack
    Biking is not about what you have between your legs, its all about how well you use it!!!!!!!

    Give your details here if you want to help your fellow xBhpian stranded in your city

    Touring Blog: Cycling in Mongolia!

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    Default Re: Planning for a cycle tour

    Quote Originally Posted by Anand1983 View Post
    All the best for your trip.

    For the accessory part, please add an air pump & two bottle cages in the cycle. cycling gloves & arm sleeves will be a valuable addition when cycling during dust and sun.

    I think a hybrid with gears will be easier to ride as you are planning for long distances

    panniers will definitely help for carrying luggage.
    Thanks Anand. I already cycle in a full sleeve jersey. Noted your points on accessories.

    ----consecutive posts auto-merged-----

    Quote Originally Posted by The Monk View Post
    1. Fixie. Nope. Also, fixie isn't a single speed, it is a bike with a fixed gear hub. i.e. if you stop pedalling, your bike stops. A hybrid with gears would be ideal. Yes, the hybrid would be great in general for keeping fit.

    5. Assuming you start early in the morning, sunrise. You can ride for a few hours. You will also get faster and be fitter when you start riding. Age is not a problem. Fitness will improve, just keep at it. You cannot do any distance for days together. You can ride for a couple of days, take the third day off. With a bit of experience you will figure out what works best for you. How many rest days, do you require.

    6. Panniers are nice. Convenient. Backpack tied to carrier is also a good idea, works cheaper. Just make sure you get a sufficiently sturdy rack for your bike which can take the weight of the luggage, be it pannier or backpack
    Thanks Monk. Noted your points.
    1. So it’s a geared hybrid. Let me read about good ones in my budget of 15-20k.
    5. Am assuming i can ride 5-8 hours a day at the maximum covering around 70-100 km. Not sure if I can fo 150 km a day. Anyway, will see how the training goes over next 6 months.

    Additional question
    7. I currently ride mostly with a walking shoes with hard soles. To carry light luggage, am thinking of riding in pair of sandals so that I don’t need to carry additional footwear for walking on day offs. So the question is riding in shoes or sandal? If shoes, will any sneakers do.
    8. During next 6 months, am planning to increase my weekly mileage from current 40-50 km to about 100 km. And plan to do a few 50-100 km rides including 50 km x 5 days at least twice. This will help me gauge my fitness as well as ability to recover. Will this be enough?

    Thanks for your responses

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    Default Re: Planning for a cycle tour

    Quote Originally Posted by sraghu73 View Post


    Thanks Monk. Noted your points.
    1. So it’s a geared hybrid. Let me read about good ones in my budget of 15-20k.
    5. Am assuming i can ride 5-8 hours a day at the maximum covering around 70-100 km. Not sure if I can fo 150 km a day. Anyway, will see how the training goes over next 6 months.

    Additional question
    7. I currently ride mostly with a walking shoes with hard soles. To carry light luggage, am thinking of riding in pair of sandals so that I don’t need to carry additional footwear for walking on day offs. So the question is riding in shoes or sandal? If shoes, will any sneakers do.
    8. During next 6 months, am planning to increase my weekly mileage from current 40-50 km to about 100 km. And plan to do a few 50-100 km rides including 50 km x 5 days at least twice. This will help me gauge my fitness as well as ability to recover. Will this be enough?

    Thanks for your responses

    7. Shoes with hard soles is the correct choice. Don't go for soft soled sneakers. Ideally you would want cycling specific cleated touring shoes. But not something I would suggest you invest in currently. Shoes, not sandals, though a friend of mine cycles in sandals. You don't need to carry additional footwear for walking, your sneakers are good enough for walking as well. A lot of touring cyclists, prefer trekking shoes. Though they are heavier, the ruggedness plays a vital role in choosing them.

    8. How much do you ride currently? Daily and weekly? And for how long? According to your answers to the previous three questions I can give you advice on how you should prep up for the next six months.
    Biking is not about what you have between your legs, its all about how well you use it!!!!!!!

    Give your details here if you want to help your fellow xBhpian stranded in your city

    Touring Blog: Cycling in Mongolia!

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    Default Re: Planning for a cycle tour

    Quote Originally Posted by The Monk View Post
    7. Shoes with hard soles is the correct choice. Don't go for soft soled sneakers. Ideally you would want cycling specific cleated touring shoes. But not something I would suggest you invest in currently. Shoes, not sandals, though a friend of mine cycles in sandals. You don't need to carry additional footwear for walking, your sneakers are good enough for walking as well. A lot of touring cyclists, prefer trekking shoes. Though they are heavier, the ruggedness plays a vital role in choosing them.

    8. How much do you ride currently? Daily and weekly? And for how long? According to your answers to the previous three questions I can give you advice on how you should prep up for the next six months.
    Thanks Monk.
    7. The reason why i was thinking of sandals was i might visit a few temples on the way. So shoes might be a minor irritant
    8. My current ride: twice a week. About 20-25 km per ride over 75-90 minutes. Plus i run 3-5 km twice a week. And do strength training at gym 3 times a week. All this on a weekly basis including 1 day of rest.

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    Default Re: Planning for a cycle tour

    Quote Originally Posted by sraghu73 View Post
    Thanks Monk.
    7. The reason why i was thinking of sandals was i might visit a few temples on the way. So shoes might be a minor irritant
    8. My current ride: twice a week. About 20-25 km per ride over 75-90 minutes. Plus i run 3-5 km twice a week. And do strength training at gym 3 times a week. All this on a weekly basis including 1 day of rest.
    7. You said it yourself. 'Minor' irritant

    8. I would suggest riding 4 times a week. Reduce one day of running and one day of gym. Neither the gym nor running will improve bike fitness. Saturday and Sunday, do 50 km rides. Monday rest. Tuesday ride 90 minutes max. Wednesday gym. Thursday Ride 90 minutes max. Friday Gym/Run. You can gradually work your way up to this. When 50 km starts appearing easy. Go for 100 km rides!
    Biking is not about what you have between your legs, its all about how well you use it!!!!!!!

    Give your details here if you want to help your fellow xBhpian stranded in your city

    Touring Blog: Cycling in Mongolia!

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    Default Re: Planning for a cycle tour

    Quote Originally Posted by The Monk View Post
    7. You said it yourself. 'Minor' irritant

    8. I would suggest riding 4 times a week. Reduce one day of running and one day of gym. Neither the gym nor running will improve bike fitness. Saturday and Sunday, do 50 km rides. Monday rest. Tuesday ride 90 minutes max. Wednesday gym. Thursday Ride 90 minutes max. Friday Gym/Run. You can gradually work your way up to this. When 50 km starts appearing easy. Go for 100 km rides!
    Thanks Monk.
    8. Let me start increasing my distance first before I increase from 2-4 days. I need to lose some weight and hence cant reduce running / gym. May be after a month i will start increasing my distance.
    9. Another idea is to do 3-5 day ride covering 250-300 km before I attempt chennai - Kanyakumari ride. I hope this wil make me understand the ground reality.
    Thanks
    Raghu

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